Just days after the beginning of autumn (on September 22), the moon waxes full in Aries, the zodiac sign that’s sometimes called the “me-first” sign. Since full moons ask us to pause and reflect, this is a good time to think about ourselves, our independence, and our creative impulses.
This is also the “Harvest Moon” for those of us in the northern hemisphere. And this year it falls on September 24. As a result of the aspects of several planets, this full moon could be challenging for some of us. But remember, the lunar and solar eclipses are over for the year. And most of the planets are no longer in retrograde. Plus, I believe that the Fall Equinox, when day and night are of equal lengths, is a good time for contemplating what we have harvested in our lives. For me the autumn equinox is best understood by looking at the Demeter/Persephone myth.
Demeter is not only the goddess of the grain harvest, which takes place at this time of year, but also half of a very mysterious goddess, who oversees both the Earth’s surface and – with her daughter Persephone – the underworld. Together they mark the changing of the seasons. In the spring, Persephone returns to Demeter in the upper world and plants begin to bloom and grow again. In the fall, Persephone goes underground and plants die back. Persephone’s journey represents the cycle of life, death, and regeneration.
One of the best symbols for this seasonal change is the seed harvested at this time of year. It is a symbol of both death and rebirth. The scythe cuts down the plant so that its seeds may be harvested and then buried in the ground to rise again the next spring as a new plant. Persephone on her annual journey back and forth from the darkness to the light also brings wisdom to her mother from the Great Below. This is a mythological description of divination, which is an inner quest to the intuitive wellspring in our depths.
The inner quest I suggest this full moon is a “Leaves” oracle. At this time of year when the trees begin to turn, their leaves become dry and brittle. As a result, it’s easier to hear their rustling sounds, even in the lightest of breezes. To begin your oracular ritual, ground and center and then state your question out loud. Next close your eyes and listen to the wind as it whispers through the leaves of your chosen tree(s). What guidance do you hear about your harvest? What do the leaves tell you about your actions in the past few months and the harvest you’ve reaped from them? Let me know. I would be interested in your divination.